Chaps score eight in second to grab road win
By Steve Pilz
PLOVER — The Marshfield Chaparrals used some early offense, capitalized on some shaky defense, and registered their first error-free game of the season in downing the Plover Pterodactyls 8-6 in amateur baseball action Tuesday at Memorial Park.
The Chaps got after Plover starting pitcher Steve Pettit early and often, chasing him after just 1 2/3 innings.
The Chaps did all their damage in the second. Noah Panzer was hit by a pitch, Alex Steines walked in front of a Cale Cuddie single, and Ryan Metz drove in a run by getting drilled by Pettit as well, giving the Chaps their first run.
Nate MacDonald’s two-run single made it 3-0, Bobby Pilz was hit by a pitch, Riley Erickson drove in a run with a fielder’s choice, and Luke Wirtz had a sacrifice fly to push Marshfield’s lead to 6-0. Pettit left the game after another hit and a pair of wild pitches.
When the smoke cleared, the Chaps had eight runs on just four hits and one error, a couple wild pitches, and three hit batters. Marshfield would not score again, but the lead proved to be enough.
Bill Held, who pitched for Winona State at one time, gave the Chaps nothing. When he was not throwing it by them with a fastball that seemed to get faster as the game went on, he was screwing them into the ground with myriad of off-speed pitches that left some Marshfield batters flailing at balls in the dirt. Held struck out 14 of the 27 Chaps he faced, walked none, and scattered six hits in 7 2/3 innings.
Plover’s Mitch Malek hit a three-run homer in the third inning to cut the lead to 8-3, and the Pterodactyls chased Marshfield starter Jack Donahue after a hit batter, a double, and consecutive run-scoring singles that made it 8-5.
Noah Panzer took over for Donahue and pitched the final three innings, allowing a run in the ninth on a single by Jason Jones, but he shut it down from there for the three-inning save.
Co-managers Justin Rayburn and Sam Schwanebeck and veteran Lucius Messerschmidt benched themselves so some of the younger Chapparrals (4-4) could get some at-bats as the summer schedule starts to heat up.
“Tonight we scored early and played good defense,” said Rayburn. “Anytime you do those two things, it puts pressure on the opposing teams.”
The Chaps will look to get their record over .500 as they take on Everest at 7:30 p.m. Saturday night at Simon Field in Schofield.
Chaparrals 8, Pterodactyls 6
Marshfield 080 000 000 – 8 11 0
Plover 003 002 001 – 6 10 1
WP: Jack Donahue. LP: Steve Pettit. SV: Noah Panzer.
SO: Donahue (6 inn.) 8, Panzer (3 inn.) 1; Pettit (1 2/3 inn.) 0, Bill Held (7 1/3 inn.) 14. BB: Donahue 2, Pettit 3.
Top hitters: P, Matt Hartel 2B; Mitch Malek HR, 3 RBIs.
Records: Marshfield 4-4, 3-3 Dairyland League; Plover not provided.